Ellen G. White Writings

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Testimonies for the Church, vol. 3, Page 225

day for grace to escape the corruptions that are in the world through lust, you need to pray as much more earnestly and constantly when at school, exposed to temptations and the contaminating influences which prevail in schools in this degenerate age, as your surroundings are more unfavorable to the formation of Christian character.

These young men have not sufficient strength of Christian character; especially is this the case with A O. He is not settled, rooted, and grounded in the truth. His hold of God has been so slight that he has not been receiving strength and light from above, but has been gathering darkness to his own soul. He has heard unbelief talked so much and has taken so little practical interest in the truth that he is not prepared to give a reason of his hope. He is unstable like a reed trembling in the wind. He is kind at heart, yet loves fun, idleness, and the company of his young friends. He has indulged this inclination to the sacrifice of his soul's interest. It is important, my brother, that you avoid mingling too much in the society of irreligious youth. The culture of your mind and heart, in connection with the practical duties of life, requires that a large share of your time be spent in the society of those whose conversation and faith will increase your faith and love for the truth.

You have tried to throw off the restraint that the belief of the truth imposes, but you have not dared to be very bold in your unbelief. Too often the levities of the world, and the society of those from whom self-communion and religion are excluded, have been your choice, and you have been, to all intents and purposes, reckoned with that class who bring the truth into contempt. You are not strong enough in faith or purpose to be in such society. In order to kill time you have indulged in a spirit of trifling which has done positive injury to you by blunting your conscience. You love approbation. If you gain this in an honorable way, it is not so sinful; but you are in danger of deceiving yourself and others; you need to be guarded on this point and see that you earn all the approval

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